Whenever I peruse through Myanimelist to thoroughly decide on which anime to watch next, I usually tend to stay away from those that have an ‘Ecchi’ tag. It’s not that I don’t like ecchi, hell, one of my favorite anime shows, the Monogatari series is chock full of it. I just feel like ecchi sort of gives anime a bad rep since it’s something hard to discuss in an openly manner towards someone who might not watch anime regularly or at all. Plus, fanservice in excess amounts can potentially hinder character and story development. But I didn’t want to pass up on this anime since I’ve read the manga (which is still currently ongoing) beforehand. Come to think of it, this is the first anime where I’ve read the manga first, so it was cool seeing moments from the pages come to life on the screen.
Prison School mainly centers around a gang of five abhorrently promiscuous guys, (they’re also the only male students at this school) Andre, Gakuto, Joe, Kiyoshi, and Shingo. Due to their unruly behavior, they get put behind bars in the isolated prison that their high school has erected. The boys find themselves in this predicament because they were caught secretly looking at some girls bathing in the female bathhouse in a disturbingly voyeuristic manner. Throughout the show, we get to see the boys and their experiences as prisoners in this confinement area, which is controlled by the Underground Student Council.
The school used to be exclusively for girls only, but due to declining birth rates in Japan, the chairman decided to start allowing boys to enroll here as well. Mari, one of the members of the USC, is mad at her father (who’s also quite a weird pervert) for allowing these deviants to attend the school since she thinks it sullies the reputation of this educational establishment. With the help of Hana (pee fiend) and Meiko (big oppai lady), they decide to make a meticulous plan to have the all the boys expelled, and return the school to being one solely for girls. At the same time, this creates an interesting conflict dynamic because the boys don’t want to be expelled due to the inconsolable shame of having to tell their family of what they did.
I thought the story was well done in execution. While the premise might sound a bit strange and hilariously over-the-top, I still found most of the scenarios involving all of the characters to be believable. The opening episodes did feel slightly rushed in my opinion though, it felt as if most of the first chapters were haphazardly glossed over or skipped entirely, but the overall pacing for the rest of the anime was handled quite nicely and never felt like it was wasting my time.
Prison School is an anime that borders on hentai and it doesn’t hold back any punches in the ecchi department. Even as someone who really likes the manga, I think it can be quite gratuitous and overbearing at times, especially the moments that involve Meiko. Most of her scenes were so revealing and suggestive. So if you are easily put off by raunchy imagery, this might be a tormenting experience that’ll test your patience and resolve.
All in all, I thought Prison School was an excellent and immensely amusing anime. Even though its filled with shamelessly repugnant fanservice, it still had a fairly well-executed story with depth, which is something I rarely say for shows that involve ecchi. If you aren’t easily deterred and offended by risqué segments, I’d totally recommend this anime.